On Sunday morning, opposition leader MK Benjamin Netanyahu addressed a gathering of members of the newly launched Jerusalem lobby at Jerusalem City Hall.
"Exactly a year ago we began Operation Guardian of the Walls," Netanyahu said. "Unlike what some people falsely claim, we did this because we refused to cancel the Flag March that takes place every year in order to stress the unity of this city. We refused to submit to the threats of Hamas, and indeed the terrorist organization fired rockets at both Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.
"For eleven days, we struck Hamas with blows they had never hitherto experienced. I hope that Hamas learned their lesson - but if they didn't, we will have to teach it to them again."
Netanyahu added that, "We never forgot that Jerusalem is our capital, but today, there are others who consider themselves the rulers of Jerusalem. They fly PLO and Hamas flags openly in the city and burn Israeli flags on the Temple Mount - and they threaten us with terrorist attacks if we fly our flag in our capital city."
The former prime minister was scathing in his condemnation of the current government, saying, "There is, however, something even worse than this and that is that within the government itself there are those who think that it is not necessary to fly the Israeli flag here, in the heart of Jerusalem. A government minister said just recently that the Flag March in Jerusalem is a statement of defiance. Do you hear? Flying a PLO flag in Jerusalem, in Lod, in Tel Aviv, in Beer Sheva - that's not called defiance. Burning the Israeli flag on the Temple Mount is not called defiance. But flying the blue-&-white flag in the heart of Jerusalem - that's called defiance."
According to Netanyahu, "The members of the coalition want to hand over control of the Temple Mount to foreign entities, and the Israeli Prime Minister has established his official residence not in Jerusalem but in his private home in Raanana. Never before was there such a need for the lobby that we are establishing today, a lobby that will strengthen Jerusalem."